Why Order Pages Trump Shopping Carts in Sales Conversion… Plus How to Lower Your Abandonment Rates

When you build an e-commerce business, one of the biggest decisions you must make is to choose between a shopping cart and an order page. That’s because the one you choose will impact your sales results. And if you choose the wrong one, you will lose customers and sales.

You cannot make a sale until the customer submits the order. A persuasive landing page and compelling sales copy are vital to get the prospect to want to buy. But it is equally important to have a smooth order process that helps to close the sale.

Any point within this order process can cause would-be customers to not buy anything. For example, if they encounter a detour or something unexpected, they can quickly lose interest and not buy.

To close the sale, the order process must confirm the offer to keep them excited. Plus, make it fast and easy to complete the order form.

The Difference Between a Shopping Cart and Order Page

In online marketing, a shopping cart is part of e-commerce software that allows visitors to a website to select items to buy. It can be integrated with a small or large catalog of items, each with a unique price.

The shopping cart can allow customers to choose different features, such as size or color, plus the quantity. Then upon checkout, there is a form to collect the customer’s name, address, plus billing and shipping information.

An order page contains a summary confirmation of the offer. Plus a form that collects the customer’s name, address, plus billing and shipping information.

Depending on your software, both the shopping cart and order page can give a wide range of features. These may include integration with an online payment gateway, such as Paypal or Stripe. Plus, product quantity, shipping, real-time pricing calculation and data encryption upon order submission.

But while both can facilitate a sale, the order page has three big advantages in getting the prospective customer to buy. The following are 3 reasons why it trumps shopping carts for most types of products and services.

Order Page Advantage #1: Speed of Sale

Once you get a prospective customer to want to buy, you must do so as fast as possible. That’s because doubt can quickly enter the consumer’s mind that can cause them to hesitate to buy.

Perhaps the biggest difference between a shopping cart and order page is the number of clicks and pages the consumer encounters. A shopping cart can require anywhere from one to upwards of 6 or more clicks that take the consumer to different pages to enter information. Pages may take time to load. The number of clicks and pages plus long amount of time it takes to complete the process are big reasons for why there are so many abandoned shopping carts.

Yet an order page has everything on one landing page. So the consumer can quickly follow the information, usually from top down, enter the information requested, and click just one button in the whole process to submit their order.

Order Page Advantage #2: Persuasive Content

A shopping cart is bulky with respect to the layout and information displayed. Yet the information that is displayed is factual. The longer the consumer sees this, the more likely their emotional excitement about the product or service will wane.

Order pages on the other hand can start off with persuasive content that confirms the offer. So when the consumer is completing the order form, they are more likely to retain an emotional connection with buying the product or service. Emotion is what sells. The longer you can keep the consumer emotionally engaged with your product, the more likely you are to close the sale.

Order Page Advantage #3: Personalization

Shopping carts are a one size fits all. Each consumer uses the same cart with the same content to select the specific products or services and quantities they want to buy. There is very little if anything that is personalized for each customer.

Order pages can be personalized for each customer based on information in their contact record or specific landing page they visited. Personalized content can increase sales conversion. So you can not only make the customer happy, but your wallet too.

In summary, shopping carts and order pages enable consumers to buy and merchants to earn sales. Yet order pages have 3 distinct advantages that can lead to higher sales conversion. They also take less time to close the sale and results in fewer contacts that abandonment the check out process.

Plus, they can boost sales conversion with persuasive content that keeps the consumer emotionally engaged with your product or service. And they can contain personalized content which further enhances customer satisfaction and higher sales conversion.

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How to Make Money Fast by Retrieving and Returning Shopping Carts

Are you looking for a way to make money fast? If you have a large utility vehicle, like a pick-up truck, you can retrieve and return shopping carts for a cash reward.

Most every mid to large retail grocery, variety and department store has a stock of shopping carts on hand. They are purchased by the store, of course, so that customers can use them when shopping in their store.

Shopping buggies are expensive. The average cost to the retailer for just one is between 75 and 100 dollars. Large ones like the kind you find at wholesale and club stores can run upwards of 200 dollars or more.

Most retail stores have dozens of them; busy big-box stores may even have hundreds of them. Purchasing enough of them to meet a store’s demand and traffic levels requires a significant expenditure of cash.

It is, therefore, in the best interest of the retailer to protect that investment. Most retailers do their best to make sure that carts remain on store property. However, shopping buggy theft is all too common. The average store loses about $8,000 $10,000 to per year to this problem.

Because they are so expensive to buy, many store owners and retail companies pay cash rewards for the return of their carts which have been stolen (or “borrowed”) and not returned. Cash rewards typically range from 25 to 50 dollars per cart.

Here’s how you can retrieve and return those buggies for cash: contact retailers in your area which have shopping carts. Find out if they pay for returned carts. Many do, but won’t give cash rewards to just anyone. (Store owners don’t want the public to abuse the reward system by stealing carts themselves in order to get the reward.) Usually you have to sign a cash-for-retrieval contract.

You’ll have to provide some forms of identification, usually a driver’s license plus one other item (like a Social Security or credit card). You may have to sign a waiver absolving the store of liability in the event of something unforeseen.

You can make arrangements with any or all of the retailers in your area. The more contracts you have, the more money you can make.

If you’ve lived in your city for any length of time, you’ve probably seen common dump sites for stolen shopping buggies. Visit these areas regularly. Additionally, get in the habit of keeping your eyes open every time you’re out and about town. You’ll probably spot discarded shopping carts regularly. You can pick these up and return them as you come across them, or store them at home until you have several of them.

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Fashion And How It Has Influenced The Society

The world is now too much conscious about fashion. Almost every day a new trend makes headlines and people soon start following it. There is much influence of the western culture all over the world right from hairdressing to styling their feet. Another thing that has grown is the use of technology with fashion. It has a larger hand in influencing the fashion. This is because whatever one dresses up they take a picture of it and post them on their individual social media profiles. People who like them would surely emulate the style when they get ready.

Fashion has not only influenced the common people but it has inspired the office goers too. They also try to maintain a fashionable look though in their formal wears. However, there are two kinds of people in the society. One group are the followers like we have mentioned earlier and the other group are the ones who have little to do with fashion. They follow their own style and add a different variation to the ongoing fashion trends. Even that sometimes becomes a trend which others intend to follow.

What fashion really means?

Fashion has nothing to do with hair or makeup. Neither it is about the cosmetics. It is the good looks the charm that one adds to his or her personality by wearing anything they like. All that matters is that how one teams up the accessories and the footwear with their dress. It does not have to be the most expensive clothes and accessories. A casual one can also work wonders if accessorized in the right way.

What are the trends?

Fashion trends keep changing every season. It has also undergone a huge change from the earlier times. Earlier the English women used to wear long gowns and flowery dresses with a hat on. Now the trend has shifted to jeans and tops.

Fashion used to be a part of an actor’s life but that has now become a part of the daily life. Fashion has become a big source of earning money. Many of the youths are making money by becoming fashion experts and giving people advice. They are making channels in YouTube and hosting shows on the television.

If you want to be a style diva you can follow their tips and dress up accordingly. Soon people will start acknowledging your sense of style and will take advice from you for styling.

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Wax Prints – An Integral Part of African Society

Africa is known for many things; its natural resources, human resources, beautiful weather and many others. One of these many Africa is known for is its wax prints.

As you may already know we are people who love color and design and our wax prints are not left out.

Wax prints come in many vibrant colors and are worn on an everyday basis and on special occasions. It’s exciting to walk down the fabric bazar with beautiful colors hanging in the stalls. You can get stuck in the market for hours trying to decide which one to pick. Wax prints can be dressed up or dressed down depending on what the individual prefers.

Women normally wear it in 2 pieces; a blouse called a “kaba” and a long skirt called a “slit”. In the past women would have an extra piece of cloth about 1.5 to 2 yards worth of material called the “akatasuo” or “a covering” to wrap around their waist or draped over their shoulder. Traditional attire is slowly fading out as modern women prefer to wear tighter and smaller blouses that do not require the akatasuo. It’s also partly due to changing times and young people wanting to wear clothes more in Western Style.

Men wear their wax print as a wrap using 8 to 12 yards of fabric depending on how big and tall they are. This is seen a lot among older men for special occasions. The younger men wear shirts made with wax prints.

COLOR SIGNIFICANCE

Prints with white backgrounds and black/navy blue patterns are normally worn on special occasions or celebrations such as marriage ceremonies and naming ceremonies. These are also worn to the funerals of people who lived a long and full life or on the last day of the funeral where most of the time the family goes to a thanksgiving service or when a party is held to round off the funeral celebration.

Women who have just delivered are supposed to wear white in the Akan culture for at least 6 months depending on which family they belong to. Black, red, and brown are worn for mourning and sorrow. Red doubles as a color to show anger and sorrow, worn usually at the funeral of someone who dies young or whose death is considered unnatural or tragic. These prints are predominantly black, black and brown, brown and black or red and black and black and red.

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Meanwhile – The Impact of Comic Books on Society

Comic books and graphic novels have long captured the imaginations of children, teens and adults everywhere. Many people have read comics when they were kids, occasionally hiding a comic book inside of a school book in order to read it while their teacher lectured. The frequency of which we would enjoy these tales usually decreased the more we grew into adulthood however, they still have a tremendous appeal. Comic books have usually been thought of as nothing more than mere “children’s books” however, they have come a long way over the years.

Comics and graphic novels address a range of societal issues and allow us to showcase what is happening in the world today. Some comic books act only as plot devices, some as social commentary, and others try to make us think.

Their has been a rise in interest in comics in recent years primarily due to the entertainment industry and the internet. The internet has given people new options for buying, selling and trading comic books with the online marketplace and websites such as eBay and Amazon.com. Online comic book forums and message boards have also given comic book readers and collectors an instrument through which to connect and share their passion for this creative medium and have piqued interest in those new to comic culture.

Comics are now recognized as a valued medium and we can see their influence in just about every sector of our entertainment. From movies to television and from video games to amusement parks, comics have had a tremendous impact on our culture. As a result comics are no longer being censored in the sense of what should and shouldn’t be in them. This may be a bad thing for some but for others it is a basic part of free speech and the first amendment.

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The Race to a Paperless Society

It is amazing how once you notice something, you begin to pay attention and in paying attention you discover a whole new world.

Several weeks ago I wrote an article on portable medical records and the possible uses of technology to bring part of the medical records from novelty status to a mainstream medical device. A few weeks later I was introduced to a new generation of portable medical records that were capable of synchronizing with the electronic medical records at a physician’s office or at a hospital.

For those of you who are not familiar with portable medical records allow me a moment to give some definitions. A portable medical record is a USB drive device such as a Thumb Drive, a USB wristband, a USB flash drive wristwatch, pendant, or other portable mass storage that can be worn on the body attached to a belt or keys and holds basic medical information in a database form. Almost all these devices now are password protected and offer varying levels of functionality.

A personal health record is the online equivalent of the portable medical record. This software exists on the Internet with storage maintained at a third-party site. The information is again password protected and in an emergency can be accessed by the healthcare provider with an Internet connection and that password.

An electronic medical record is a software package utilized by hospital healthcare facility physicians that replaces the paper patient chart. This is an official document and subject to significant government regulation. By 2008 every healthcare provider in the United States must be executing concrete plans to transition from paper to electronic records and by 2014 all paper must be gone.

With that in mind let’s turn now back to the portable medical records. This is a market that is exploding. A few short weeks ago I wrote an article, my second in this arena, that described nine products of this type. Two days ago I did a new Google search on this topic (okay, I was desperate for an article topic) and I found no fewer than 24 companies now offering these devices in the United States, Canada and England. Many of these devices are now being made in Taiwan and China and installed directly on the flash drives. They are coming in every shape, size and form but unfortunately with little or no functionality.

Yes, they all have some form of password protection and an emergency screen where basic information can be seen without the use of the password. They hold information such as living wills, organ donor cards, healthcare surrogate contracts, past medical histories, allergies, medications and a few hold greater levels of data. Two of them integrate with online personal health records but only one can import and export to electronic medical records.

None of these systems however have one basic piece that is required for credibility in the medical world. It is called change tracking and it is the ability for the healthcare professional reading the portable medical record to look at what changes have been made in the portable medical record and what existed in the record before the change was made. Change tracking is an internal audit of the system and ensures that there has been no tampering that could threaten a patient’s life.

At least there was not such a system until this week. This week [http://www.theoriginalmymedicalrecords.com] announced the prototype release of Version 1.2, a portable medical record with change tracking, high-level encryption and password protection.

This is truly something new and represents a second generation of portable medical record.

Where will this new medical device find a home?

As the water resistant or splash resistant USB devices these units are already finding a home on the wrists of scuba divers, sky divers, mountain bikers and others who enjoy high fun/ high risk sports.

But I envision a larger market. I envision a day when rather than receiving a flimsy paper wristband at the hospital or nursing home a patient has a portable medical record in a waterproof band around their wrist. When the nurse comes by with their wireless Tablet computer to chart she simply plugs the patient record band in and the records are immediately synchronized. The patient goes nowhere without their chart on their wrist.

When they go home the patient takes the band with them carrying the entire chart in miniature form. The hospital has its copy. The patient has their copy and their copy goes back to the doctor’s office.

In the event of an emergency the patient’s band is on their wrist and it does not matter what emergency room they go into, what EMS service picks them up all the important information is at the fingertips of those there to save their life.

I envision a day when my disaster medical assistance team (MDMS/DMAT-FL3) provides care in a Katrina like event after a natural disaster with subsequent flooding and places a USB flash drive wristband around the wrist of every evacuee. Information on federal assistance, registration for finding lost family members, their own personal information as well as a health record will travel with them from the moment of rescue until their final destination. If they already had a personal medical record on their wrist or in their pocket or around their neck as an independent we in the MDMS/DMAT-FL3 would be able to plug their device into our computers and upload the important information to help them recover their lives and help us treat their injuries.

This second generation of flash drive device holds tremendous promise not only for the transfer of information but even the prevention of medical errors by ensuring that the most basic information is in the hands of those who are making the most important decisions.

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How Instant Messaging Has Plagued Our Society

The era of mobile technology has helped speed up communication between individuals. This is the general notion nowadays. Everyone talks about how it is much easier to communicate with loved ones who live miles apart than it was to do so in the old days. Technology has enabled man to communicate with someone from the opposite end of the globe within minutes. Business growth has taken place because the world is now a global village thanks to technological advancements. One can call his children who are in a university abroad; one can make a video call to friends and family who live in other cities, countries and continents! How easy it has become for an individual to get in touch with another individual. It seems as if everybody is merely a phone call away! However, all that glitters is definitely not gold. Everything comes with its price and the process of development in communication technology surely comes with a heavy price; the distortion of language, the murder of manners and the loss of close bonds between individuals.

There is no language on planet earth that has emerged overnight. Languages evolve over long periods of time. They are continuously improved as language is the primary factor which makes human beings superior to all other creatures. Yet, within what seemed like the blink of an eye, communication technology has distorted languages, particularly the English language, in a ghastly manner.

Since we live in the world where nobody has enough time, we look for short cuts in everything including expression. A very small example is the use of abbreviations to show joy and happiness; LOL is part of most internet and cell phone users’ daily vocabulary! In our attempts to ‘save time’, we have no respect for manners which were once a big part of language. A few years back, if one was busy, he or she would apologize to the other person and promise to get back shortly. Nobody has time for that now. TTYL is the new way of telling people how busy you are. Where are the manners of speech? Where is the respect for others?

‘U’ is the new ‘You’ simply because it takes less time to type. Students often make the mistake of using this form of writing in their formal assignments and exams, leaving the poor old English teachers shocked and speechless!

The linguistic impacts that communication technology has had are countless. However, these are not the only impacts that this technology has had. I once read something on Facebook (oh the irony!) which said, ‘you won’t have any wifi in the forest but I promise you’ll have a better connection’. The words struck me immediately because of the meaning they held. Despite the fact that the internet has made communication so easy, it seems like the connection between people has deteriorated. One sits for hours in front of a screen, using fingers instead of one’s tongue to type words instead of saying them and using emoticons to express feelings instead of using his or her own features to do so. The mini heart attack that one gets if he or she misplaces her phone even for a small while is not because of the fact that the person won’t be able to communicate with friends. It’s because of the fear of being ‘disconnected’ from the lives of hundreds of people one has added as friends on their Facebook account. Communication as a process has sped up, yet the process of communicating has deteriorated. It feels like the human race no longer knows how to communicate.

Communication technology has definitely helped the human race. However, the damage that it has caused and continues causing with each passing day cannot be ignored. If only the world did become a forest with no wifi, there probably would be a better connection after all.

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Society Is Witnessing the Increase Rate in Juvenile Crime

As we move into our adolescent stage, we soon start to take our own responsibilities. Behavioral changes occur which is why we become more social and self-dependent while making ourselves less dependent on our immediate family. It is obvious that in our teenage there is an adrenaline rush which excites our freedom and so we starts making own decisions related to education and choices in our lives.

It is ultimately the society and culture that contribute in the development of human. Attitudes, beliefs, behavior is actually the reflection of our society that every human posses. Areas that are economically deprived and experience low employment will surely prove to have high crimes. The areas that come with fewer opportunities in respect to education and work can never think of demolishing juvenile crime. The European countries do have a high rate of juvenile crimes and it is absolutely not a new phenomenon.

What leads to juvenile crime?

Parents try a lot to protect their children and keep them away from watching any kind of inappropriate media content and negative news. But, is it really possible? No matter how hard you try, it is impossible to completely keep your children secluded from negativity of the world as teens are today more engrossed into computers and social media.

  • Nowadays teens have quicker access to information as it is easily viewed in their smart phones. But, due to lack of maturity and way of thinking, it becomes really difficult for them to understand the true meaning of any news and the sense of independence is rather being misused.
  • Due to easy access to all kind of information, teens can read and view things that might not be appropriate. Girls fantasize about their love affairs whereas boys imagine themselves to be invincible.

These are the reasons why today’s generation is more inclined towards criminal activities. Being more isolated, teens are completely involved in technology. Teens those who grow up in a society that struggles to earn their bread everyday can certainly evoke a sense of anti-social behavior.

Categorizing juvenile crime

We can categorize juvenile crimes by felonies and misdemeanors. This categorization is basically done based on intensity of any crimes and level of violence in any cases. Depending on the intensity of any crime such as sexual offense or using a weapon with the intention to harm anyone can be treated as an adult crime.

Juvenile crimes can lead to severe consequences and it is the reason behind keeping the families far apart and so it can take any the innocence of a child. The childhood is literally endangered due to exposure of criminal minds and deeds all around.

Individual and family risk factors

There are different factors involved which can influence in juvenile criminal act. Minor who have lower level of intelligence and lacks proper education is certainly more prone to become a criminal. While there are also other factors which can lead to such heinous act such as uncontrolled aggression, impulsive behavior and dissatisfaction in everything.

Sometimes families do have contribution in making an adolescent violent which leads to some dreadful crime. Lack of supervision and parental guidance, neglect and abuse, parental conflict and lack of emotional, psychological support to kids can certainly contribute in ill behavior. Children who are not so close with their parents usually get involved in inappropriate activities.

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New Novel Set in Homosexual Society Explores Reverse Discrimination

Patricia Marie Budd’s Hadrian’s Rage is a fascinating upside-down look at a country in the twenty-second century in part of what was Canada. In the country of Hadrian, homosexuality is the norm and heterosexuality is frowned upon and, until recently, illegal. Hadrian was named for the gay Roman emperor, and its goal is population control and restoration of the environment. Heterosexuals are blamed both for gay bashing and for overpopulating the earth, so scientists have genetically altered humans to make them homosexual, although some still have straight or bisexual tendencies. While it is not illegal to be straight, anyone caught having heterosexual sex is sentenced to death because of the danger that overpopulation poses to the country and the world.

However, those with straight tendencies do exist. Before the novel opens, Todd Middleton, a popular basketball player, was one of them. When he was caught having sex with his friend Crystal Albright, he was sent to a reeducation camp where the camp director used extreme measures to try to wipe away his heterosexual feelings, including raping him. In despair, Todd begged his best friend, Frank Hunter, to mercy kill him. Frank did so, and as a result, Frank is now serving a lifetime sentence in Hadrian’s army. (These events happened in Hadrian’s Lover, to which Hadrian’s Rage is a sequel, although it is also a standalone novel.)

Such is the situation when Hadrian’s Rage opens. Frank Hunter’s family has been torn apart-his fathers-Geoffrey and Dean-have split up because Dean, who also underwent reeducation in his youth-is now unwilling to deny his straight tendencies. Dean has become part of a Gay-Straight Alliance on a college campus. Meanwhile, one member of Hadrian’s media is no longer willing to promote gay propaganda against straights. Melissa Eagleton, head anchor of the national news, leaves her job when the station owner wants her to promote his agenda rather than let her report the truth. When Melissa sets up a rival station, new opinions begin to be expressed in Hadrian. Simultaneously, straight people are starting to appear in public, holding hands, and being attacked as a result. And then a young college student, Tara May Fowler, is brutally beaten to death after coming out as straight to two other girls whom she thought were her friends. Amid all this chaos, will Hadrian be able to survive, or will it fall apart and allow the hordes of straight people seeking to breach its walls to take over and destroy the earth?

Author Patricia Budd has done an amazing job of not only imagining a world of reverse discrimination, but in bringing home the fact that this world is a thin metaphor for our own. Throughout the novel, she provides footnotes referencing real-life events in recent years that are the basis for the novel’s scenes. For example, the death of Tara May Fowler is based on the brutal murder of Vladislav Tornovoi, who was raped with beer bottles, tortured, and murdered by two of his friends on Friday, May 10, 2013 in Volgograd, Russia after coming out to them as gay. The book is dedicated to Tornovoi’s memory.

Patricia Budd certainly knows how to create an intriguing fictional world. The reader watches how wrongly the people of Hadrian behave, despite their good intentions, and feels both saddened and shocked to think such things are happening in our own world at the present time. Budd’s pacing is fabulous, with short chapters and news reports to keep the reader constantly wondering what will come next. She also does an excellent job of juggling multiple plots and characters so that the reader never gets bored. Most importantly, she creates realistic and endearing characters who search their hearts for truth and then find the courage to act upon it. Readers will fall in love with Destiny Stuttgart, the last of the Founding Families of Hadrian, who stands up for what she believes is right, even when people say it goes against the country’s constitution and they dismiss her as old and senile. And then there are the characters whose hearts are conflicted, who want revenge but find themselves falling in love with their enemies. In the end, the novel offers a deep and moving expression of how overcoming prejudice and being open to forgiveness can change the world.

I thought Budd’s previous book, Hadrian’s Lover, a powerful and highly imaginative novel, but Budd has now superseded it. Hadrian’s Rage leaves me in awe. I don’t think anyone who reads this book will ever forget it, and hopefully, it will help to change the world, one heart at a time.

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Domestic Violence: A Scar on Indian Society

Domestic violence is a reality in many families around the world. Since I come from a relatively secure environment I am nothing short of appalled by the fact of domestic violence. I used to think that this was a problem mainly in developing regions and among uneducated people but stood corrected once I became sensitive to ground realities. According to the global estimates published by the World Health Organization, 1 in 3 women worldwide have experienced either physical and/or sexual violence in their lifetime. Domestic violence isn’t something that happens merely in purely and if I may add, harshly, patriarchal structures, but also in so called progressive cultures. It is as much of a problem in America as it is in India, although the levels and kinds of interventions may differ. Domestic violence is a sad occurrence for it reveals the lack of respect and honour given to women not only in society at large but within the boundaries of their own homes!

The National Crime Records Bureau reveal that a crime against a woman is committed every three minutes; a woman is raped every 29 minutes; a dowry death occurs every 77 minutes, and one case of cruelty committed by either the husband or relative of the husband occurs every nine minutes. This occurs despite the fact that women in India are legally protected from domestic abuse under the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005. The Act provides a definition of domestic violence that is comprehensive and includes all forms of physical, emotional, verbal, sexual, and economic violence, and covers both actual acts of such violence as well as threats of violence. Despite having such systems in place, domestic violence still continues to carry on its demonic existence within families.

In the case of domestic violence, the victim is usually the woman who is perceived to be subservient to her male counterpart. According to the National Family Health Survey – 4 (2016) conducted by the Union health ministry, every third woman, since the age of 15, has faced domestic violence in various forms. The survey reveals that 27 percent of women have experienced physical violence since the age of 15 in India. These are pretty disturbing figures. It doesn’t matter that such cases are more common in rural areas than in urban ones. The cause of concern here is that something as demeaning and barbaric as this is even occurring in our country. India’s listing according to a report by Thomson Reuters, as the “fourth most dangerous country” in the world for women doesn’t help our cause. No country is without its flaws but for a country that worships women deities… it doesn’t speak very well about us.

When we think of domestic violence, we are prone to think that husbands are the primary perpetrators. While this is true to a certain extent it is not the only offender. 31 percent of married women, according to the survey, have experienced physical, sexual, or emotional violence from their spouses. While married women are prone to receive trouble mostly from their husbands besides other family members like in-laws, unmarried women have also reported physical violence mostly from their mothers or step-mothers (56%), fathers or step-fathers (33%), sisters or brothers (27%), and teachers (15%).

As if this wasn’t enough to sour the mood, the surveyors discovered a chilling fact: Women in India are supportive of domestic violence! Yes, you read that right. Data shows that women between the ages of 40-49 were most supportive of domestic violence, with 54.8% in agreement. The percentage justifying abuse is surprisingly only marginally lesser among younger women. 47.7% of girls between the age of 15-19 agreed with domestic violence. 54.4% of rural women agreed with domestic abuse while 46.8% of urban women supported it.

Take a minute. Go over the numbers again and think about what they have to say. The Indian family is definitely not a healthy place. Nearly 50% of families are marred by domestic abuse be it from husbands, parents, in-laws, siblings, children or other relatives. This brought home to me the grave situation our country’s women are in. For most of my life, domestic violence was something I read about in the newspaper or watched on television. But after listening to a colleague who shared her experience of domestic abuse, I couldn’t ignore its ugly existence any more.

This got me thinking: How can we prevent domestic abuse from taking place? Education has a pivotal role to play in alleviating this somber situation. The main distinguishing factor in acceptance of domestic violence is education, much more than income, or even age. The report stated that instances of domestic violence, including physical and sexual violence decreases sharply with schooling and education. Cases of physical or even sexual violence are significantly lesser among educated people than among un-educated ones. But this alone is not enough.

A legal framework is set up to tackle issues of domestic violence but often such issues don’t make it to the court or even to the police because of the culture of conservatism and shame that is attached to them. However, women need to be made aware that there is the strong arm of the law behind them. Numerous NGO’s are working around the clock to ensure that women’s rights are met and their grievances heard. Domestic abuse is a blot on any society’s character and concerted efforts must be made to erase it all together. The way ahead is tough and the battle has already begun. But have the soldiers prepared for the war? The side-effects of domestic abuse as well as those of external interventions are numerous and threaten the overall fabric of the family and society but justice must be done. How and by whom are important and urgent questions but if each one can take the bold step to prevent and/or address abuse appropriately, they would be playing no small in restoring the integrity of society’s character.

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